Thursday, October 12, 2023

Life In Lloyd, Part Four Hundred And Fifty Six

Right before I get to the county line on some of my walks, there are two houses. One belongs to a guy I've talked to before and his house and yard are very tidy and neat, grass and bushes trimmed, kept-up nicely. But the house right before his, which is in a grove of the most beautiful oak trees you ever did see, is a house in a yard that I can't comprehend how they get so trashed out. That picture doesn't even begin to show the amount of debris scattered about. And it is SO scattered that I can't  fathom how they do that. Do they just walk about the yard and dump garbage and car parts and old furniture and old appliances and ice chests and buckets and building materials random places that seem to them to be good spots for whatever particular crap they are throwing away? Are they hoarders whose house is so full that the overflow just has to go in the yard? It is an amazement to me. The house is some sort of prefab thing (as is the tidy one next door to it) and it doesn't even appear to have a front door, just a piece of black plastic hung like a curtain where the door would be. How do people live like this? 
I know I am being Mrs. Judgy McJudgement here but it seems like it would be the most miserable of existences to be surrounded by this sort of chaos and junk. And yes, obviously poverty is an issue and I have no idea what sort of mental issues are involved. I am just bewildered. I know that for me, having at least a semblance of order creates a sense of peace. That's why I make my bed every day. When I walk through my bedroom, that made bed with its aligned pillows and unwrinkled quilt give me a sense of order. Of control,  probably. 
Candy has tidied my library and although I didn't realize it, the messiness there had become overwhelming. Every day now I see this sight through my kitchen door.

All she did was straighten the books and other things on the shelf but that sight gives me a true sense of wellness. 
She also cleared off and stacked up the books that were spilling over the table in front of the little couch in there. 

She asked me if she could shelve them and I told her that no, I wasn't ready for that. These were the books that my grandchildren loved the most but honestly- I needed someone else to help me deal with the fact that some of them may never be read out-loud again by me. And so she just stacked them neatly on a cedar chest in front of a window which reassures me that they are there, should the opportunity and desire arise in which to read them but they are ordered, they are neat. They are not a source of chaos. 
And I know that I am beyond privileged to have the ability to pay someone who is good at this sort of thing to help me. 

There's another house I see on my walk that I am pretty sure was, at one time, the home of a hoarder. Or a hoarder couple. It's a beautiful old house and no one has lived in it since I've been here but the people who owned it lived in a doublewide off to the side and back of it. Things spilled out onto the porch of the old house and it always made me so sad. The old man of the couple used to drive around in a car, itself packed with stuff and he would often stop and talk to me which I did not find especially pleasant. He died some time ago and I'm not sure if his widow is still alive or not. But recently, there has been a lot going on there. A huge trash container was set in the front yard and it became filled with...whatever was in the house, I guess. When I walked past the place today, I noticed that the yards of both the doublewide and the house have been cleared. Like- bush-hogged. It looks naked. 

That's one side of the side of the house. The lines of it still look straight and I am sure it could be restored. Perhaps this is what is going on. I have heard that the house was built by the town doctor back in the early part of the 1900's. He had a telephone and that was where everyone came to make calls or get messages because no one else had one. 
The yards needed attention and that's for sure. The doublewide, although it was probably less than three hundred feet from the road, was hidden in the jungle of it all. But whoever did it was indiscriminate in their clearing. There were several beautiful old camellias that are gone now.

Well, someone could make a nice home place there. 

It did rain last night. In fact, it began right after I wrote that it was not raining. It started out with just a pattering and although it never got very heavy, I think it rained most of the night. It was still raining when I got up and it's been overcast all day. I do feel better though and I am certain that the rain and a good sleep restored me. In fact, I slept so well that when I made my bed this morning, I discovered that my pillows which are right next to the window at the head of the bed, were wet on the edges. It could have been raining on me as far as I was aware.

I talked to Mr. Moon today. We had a good chat. He's having such a good time. Last night the fish he took up with him was cooked, some grilled, some fried, and all he had to do was prep it as two of the other men took over from there. He fed fourteen people with those fish! Sort of a loaves and fishes deal, if you ask me. Not all of the folks were part of his little hunting group. Some of them were guides and their children and I don't know who all. They've obviously developed a whole community up there. He said that the tartar sauce I made was a big hit. I'm glad of that. A few people asked him what ingredients were in it and he said, "I have no idea," which is the truth. He doesn't. Hell, I don't even know what all I put in that stuff. Well, that's sort of a lie. 

I did a little mending on the same pair of Mr. Moon's overalls that I've been working on for weeks. I just never take the time to sit down and do it. But today I did. 

Maurice, who has obviously been defending our property, came and sat on my lap which makes it hard to sew but I know that she needs some love. 
She only hurt me a little bit. 
I watched part of a movie (The Book Club: The Next Chapter) with Jane Fonda, Diane Keaton, Candace Bergen, and Mary Steenburgen in it. Among many others. Gosh but Mary Steenburgen is a beautiful woman. 
Anyway, it was not completely terrible but sort of ridiculous. I guess my internet kept going in and out because the images kept being pixelized in a rather horrifying way and it didn't even matter. I mean, it's right and good that woman in their seventies or whatever, are portrayed as still being sexual and beautiful and active and desirable and funny and smart and...oh, you know the drill. Of course the odds of finding four "regular" women of that age who are as gorgeous and slim and unwrinkled as the four women in the movie outside of Hollywood are about the same as finding a sleeping princess in the forest who only needs a kiss from a prince to restore her to life. 
Or something like that. 

Trust me- this picture has been photoshopped out the yang. 

And why does only one woman in this group have gray hair? 

Well. I guess that was my little soapbox speech for the day.

I have truly enjoyed today with its balance of physical activity and sloth. I may do the same tomorrow. 

Oh- here's something I did. 

Y'all- this is not all healthy and shit. What happened is that week before last when I decided to change up my breakfasts from cheese toast to cottage cheese and fresh fruit, I bought blueberries and black berries from the coldy room at Costco. Organic. So you know those things weren't cheap. And I ate them for a few days and then my inner four-year old put her foot down and said, "No." I mean- if there were some sort of sweetener on them like, oh, let's say- sugar, it would been okay. But I switched over to fresh pineapple and bananas which are also very much fruit but have their own sweetness. I may have become a tropical fruit only woman.
And there in the refrigerator sat those berries, sending out their guilt beams and today I just couldn't take it any more. Plus, those things weren't getting any fresher. 
So. Berry cobbler it was. 
Oh yes! Fresh berries are so healthy when you mix them with sugar and lemon juice and top them with flour, butter, sugar, and milk, and bake them in a 350 degree oven until done. I guess they're less deadly than brownies and must contain at least some fiber. 

This will never be not a struggle unless I get some sort of dread disease and just cannot eat. And honestly, like I've said, I don't really care that much about sweets so I'm sure that a lot of that cobbler will still be in the refrigerator when Mr. Moon gets home. 

Here's a screen shot of the information I am getting right now from my phone's Cornell Merlin app which is a bird ID app with the ability to identify birds from their songs and sounds. 

Lis told me about this and it is amazing. 

Wood ducks? Well, I do live on the back of a swamp. A few minutes ago the app also ID'ed a mockingbird and a blue jay. 

Is this not wonderful? I know the names of the singers of my sunset performers. 

What a world. 

Love...Ms. Moon


  1. Jane Fonda has some mighty fine wigs! I wonder what she would look like au naturel? Quite scary I would imagine.
    Baking fruit is a great way of preserving it. You did a good job there.
    I must see if I can find an app like that for our birds.
    So glad to hear Mr Moon is having fun and feeding the masses - with your tartare sauce. Ms Moon's Tartare Sauce. Has a ring to it, no?

    1. I have wondered that myself- what does Jane look like sans wig? She has come out and said that she will not be getting any more cosmetic surgery and regrets what she has gotten. But you know- she sure has had a very long-time career and I am sure the surgeries helped with that.
      Baked fruit. Haha! With that preservative crust on top!
      It is good tartar sauce but the fish was the best, I am quite certain.

  2. Have you seen “Eighty for Brady”? It’’s pretty cute, too. As for being poor, my mom was one of 8 kids and they were very poor. But my grandma told her kids that poor people should be clean just like rich people. Could be why I have to make my bed first thing every morning, and I can’t go to bed with dishes in the sink.

    1. No. I have not seen it. Somehow I just can't relate to the idea of getting excited about seeing Tom Brady in person.
      I don't make my bed first thing but I do make it every day and no, I can't go to bed with a dirty kitchen. Just can't. But you know- that could be a bit of a disorder too. A little OCD, maybe? And I feel sure that some sort of mental unwellness is going on with the people who live in that house.

  3. That feel of a system of order is so comforting, and a bit of control we can have. The years I was divorced, I often didn't make my bed. Then we all moved in together, and Mom asked if I would be making my bed. I was noncommittal, and she said "If you don't, I will." So I've made my bed every morning since. It's good to have to turn it down at night.

    1. Good ol' Mom! You should have let her make it. She probably would have had a great time fuming at you every day.
      Not really.
      My grandmother insisted that we make our beds every morning when she was taking care of us. We had to get the sheets straight and tight and that chenille wicking bedspread perfectly wrinkle-free. What was that called, that type of bedspread? I can't remember.

  4. I think Candace Bergen is one of the most beautiful women there has ever been. Those bones!
    I like a bit of order around me, and tend to tidy as I go, cleanup as I cook, all that. Otherwise I get tired and frazzled.
    I think your cleaning lady is improving your daily life a lot. I'm very glad you have her.

    1. Candace is indeed a beauty. Always has been.
      I definitely clean-as-I-go in the kitchen and could no more start cooking a meal if the kitchen was messy than I could perform surgery in an outhouse.
      And tidying up as you go only makes sense. Although sometimes, especially with kids, it's not possible.
      I think that Candy is indeed improving my life.

  5. Executive dysfunction is very real and can make simple tasks overwhelming whether cleaning up the yard or taking a shower and everything in between. Poverty does play a part especially when people don’t have anyone to help them but depression and other illnesses can make anything but survival difficult at times. Rebecca

    1. I realize that and wonder what these folks are dealing with. I know for sure that it's not just being trashy. That is one thing but a situation like this is entirely another. I wish there was someone who could help them.

  6. When my brother-in-law lived in Africa in what was then the Gold Coast (now Ghana), he talks about the poverty. But for all that poverty, he was amazed that he never saw a dirty person. Their shacks were perfectly tidy, the kids were always clean, their clothes clean.

    1. I have noticed the same in Mexico. Even in the poorest neighborhoods, the smell of Fabuloso scents the air and sometimes, entire rooms are open to the outside and looking in (you can't help it) you see tile floors, clean as can be, and everything else looks scrubbed and tidy too.

  7. I know the "singers" that wake me each morning with a non-stop chorus of coo-coo coo-coo for three hours are mourning doves and they drive me bananas!
    I love Mary Steenburgen's dress.
    There are houses around here, not in my suburb but in my city, that look like that trashed one, they get warnings to clean up on a regualr basis by whichever council their address is within, but often nothing is done so eventually the council sends a huge truck and hauls away what they can. The owners are never happy about it and soon collect another load which becomes an eyesore.

    1. We get doves too, but they don't wake me up in the morning. I always have a fan running all night so that may block some of the sound.
      That is a cool dress, isn't it?
      Don't you think that a yard like that is a real symptom of mental unwellness? I do.

  8. That app sounds pretty cool. I wonder if it works with British birds?

    Mary Steenburgen IS beautiful. She's been a favorite of mine for years. I love her dress in that photo. Candace Bergen is looking more and more like her father!

    It's a shame about the camellias, but that house will be a great fixer-upper for someone.

    I never understand people who pile their yard with crap. It's always been a mystery to me. Years ago there was a house down the street from my mom where the owners collected about 12 boats and a score of lawnmowers and god knows what else, all parked in the yard and surrounded by other trash. It was unreal.

    1. I have no idea, Steve, but it sure is a cool app. You could try it out. It's free.
      I've always like Ms. Steenburgen too. Ted Danson is a smart and lucky man.
      I really hope someone takes on the restoration of that house. It's going to be real job and it's not going to be cheap.
      One of the houses we bought in Tallahassee was way reduced in price because it was right next to a house that had all sorts of junk in the back yard. The owner was, in fact, a junkman. Anyway, no one wanted to buy the house we got and it was a really nice house. And then right after we bought it, the old man died and his son and daughter-in-law moved into the house and got rid of all the junk and were great neighbors so that worked out quite well!

  9. A lot of my brunch bunch friends color their hair. We are all the same age (high school friends) but only 2 of us have gone gray. I'm too lazy to color my hair and just don't care about that.
    Glad you are feeling better and hope you enjoy your weekend, Mary.

    1. I think gray hair is beautiful. I wish mine would go ALL silver but some of the darker hair refuses to turn. Bah!

  10. not only has that photo been photoshopped out the yang, all four of those women have had extensive work. which if it makes them happy with themselves OK but I think it's a little sad that they had to have all that work to maintain the illusion of youth when they are not young. it's like wiping your history away, as if 70+ years of life left no mark.

    I'm with you. I don't get how people can live among all that trash strewn about. poverty aside, poor people can still have pride of place.

    and I do hope someone plans to restore that old house.

    1. I agree with you about cosmetic surgery but when you're in the film industry, I think that if you want to continue having a career, you have to get it. Or at least, that's what everyone is told. I see more and more older men who have obviously had work done too.
      I feel like the people who live in that house have had all the pride beat out of them by life. Does that make sense?
      Gosh. Me too on that house. I've been walking past it for twenty years, hoping that someone, at some point, would do something with it.

  11. Your house is home beautiful. Sweet. I also love the house that needs LOVE, it would be fun to fix it if one had the energy and could live in Florida heat.

    1. That house is going to take a lot of money, too. I sure would hate to see it lost to time.

  12. Photographs Your house and your neighbourhood always makes me think of a Hollywood film set set the south
    I love it

    1. We're pretty southern here for sure. We're not Gone With The Wind, though.

  13. Can't grasp the concept of randomly tossing unwanted items willy nilly outside...with no order at all. Whatever the reason.... doesn't appear *healthy*. But that old house that had it's yard *bush hogged* is interesting...and with tons of TLC could be a great house! I hope it gets some love rather than being razed. Yes..lovely women for the film cover....but VERY photo shopped! I think Mary and Diane (in real life) are the two who've had the least (if any) *work* done. And....If I had that fruit cobbler....I'd have it for B, L, and D and polish it off in short order!
    Susan M

    1. I can't even imagine the work that old house is going to need but like I said- it sure has good bones. Or appears to, anyway.
      I think that Mary and Diane have both had work. Their faces just do not look like they have 70 and 77 (respectively) years of living inside of them.
      I have to say the cobbler is, well- not bad at all.

  14. Hi Mary Moon. I have to tell you I heard your man, Keith Richards, being interviewed by Howard Stern this week. It was a wonderful interview! I see why you think so highly of him. It made me think of you. I wish you could have heard it. Have a good evening :)

  15. Oh, I love that Merlin birdsong app. It told me today that bluebirds were flying overhead - a wonderful thing to know.

    I do agree with you that hoarding is a mental disorder. Friends bought a hoarded house after the husband died and the wife moved away. They took 137 dumpster-loads to the landfill.

    Chris from Boise

  16. love the bird ap- i use it when we camp. we have a drug dealer across the street from us who collects cars, boats and such from folks that owe him money. we've complained to the city but nothing happens bc i think he's a snitch because after a while, his customer base changes like a bunch of them went to jail and shit. enjoy your alone time and that cobbler. my gift to myself at 52 is that i've decided that being fat is better than constantly berating myself for not being thin. xxalainaxx


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